Students in the Class of 2015 may be thinking about their individual futures, but on Thursday, April 30, they shared with the CJ community how they have made a difference in the future of others during the Stang Symposium.
The symposium was in honor of graduate and martyr Sr. Dorothy Stang, SNDdeN, '49. During the program, students presented the findings from their Senior Capstone Project- a cross-curricular, inquiry-based research project that calls seniors to become servant leaders in our world today.
"When we say raising awareness, we really did a lot possible to raise awareness outside of school," said Mikayla Kleinhans about her group's capstone project, which focused on child abuse.
There were a wide variety of capstone group topics including homelessness, human trafficking, fair trade, self image, poverty, literacy and environmental issues.
"Our students lived out the mission of CJ and demonstrated hearts as wide as the world," said Capstone Coordinator Molly Bardine. "The groups educated others on service, justice and peace!"
Students began thinking about their capstone their sophomore year. During their junior year, they wrote a research paper about their topic to help them prepare for their senior project.
"In the beginning, we had to find sources and look up research to give us a better understanding," said Margo Duffy, who was in the capstone group focused on child abuse. "It motivated us even more to help raise awareness."
Some seniors chose their project topic because they have seen first hand how they could make a difference in the Dayton community. Anthony Walton said his group's project, which was focused on art education, was familiar to him as his father has taught art for more than 20 years.
"I've seen the positives and negatives he has experienced," said Walton. "I have also the seen the positive and negatives his students have experienced and how art education benefits them."
Working on the project brought seniors together with other students who they may not have interacted with before.
"We had a great time working on our project. We grew closer to the kids and as friends in our Capstone Group," said Trey Harper, who's group focused on being positive role models for young men.
The students said they not only hope to use the information they learned while working on these projects in the future, but they hope to inspire the Class of 2016 as those students prepare to work on their projects for next year.
"After we go off to college and go our seperate ways, we want to continue to help others. We also want people to continue to be advocates for others," Walton said.